With only three away fixtures to go fans of Hull City have yet to receive any news from the club on how the remainder of their Away Supporters Initiative (ASI) budget is to be spent.
For the 2014-15 season, the Premier League clubs collectively agreed to set aside £200,000 each for the Away Supporters Initiative.
Across the 20 clubs we’ve seen this money being used in various ways – but most commonly to subsidise away ticket prices and travel to away games.
However, Hull City Supporters’ Trust claim the club has only spent around £20,000, on travel subsidised by the club to their away game against Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium.
Now the Trust have written to the Premier League in search of answers:
Fans of Hull City AFC have so far been unable to see where the money from the ASI fund has been spent this season. The club has confirmed that it subsidised travel costs of some fans to the game at Arsenal, although this was not announced at the time. We believe this action will have expended no more than £20,000, leaving the majority of the ASI Fund unaccounted for. With only three away games to go, supporters are becoming concerned that they are going to see no more of this money.
HCST was told by the club that some of the money would be spent on the “away fans experience” for their trip to Swansea last weekend, however, fans who attended the fixture reported no sign of this.
Before the start of the season, the Fans Working Group met with clubs representative to discuss how the money should be spent, with most fans agreeing that it should be spent on reducing ticket prices.
Hull City fans are seeking clarification from the Premier League on its rules surrounding the Away Supporters Initiative, particularly guidelines on how the budget should be spent and how it is accounted for. “In response the club promised that a statement clarifying their position was imminent,” the letter says. “As yet, there has been no such statement.”
The FSF backs HCST's action to establish how the club has spent the Away Supporters Initiative budget. Additionally, we urge the Premier League to address the problem, and hold clubs to account on this matter - particularly with a potential increase in the size of the Away Supporters Initiative in the coming seasons.
Thanks to Action Images for the images used in this article.